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was shown an area displaying israeli air defenses including the so-called iron dome. then the motorcade saided to jerusalem where the pred will have a little down time before meetings today. our own chuck todd is in jerusalem. he joins me now. chuck, looks like to be a rather pleasant day at least weather-wise. what is going on in the holy land? >> well, mr. russert, it is unbelievable weather here greeting the president. pretty much a perfect spring day, if you will here in the holy land. what was interesting is the first thing the president said as he got off and there were microphones everywhere, i don't think he knew he was on, he said it's good to be away from congress. also that chitchat as making his way through shaking hands with various dignitaries, he and netanyahu were heard joking about difficulties in the budget process that both leaders are having in each of their countries. but, look, this event, you set it up well. this trip is heavy on symbolism, going to be somewhat light on substance as far as what, you know, what is he going to take away? what are the take aways? the
,000 wounded. the defense department reports $32 billion has been spent since 2003. tom cotton served as a platoon leader. as a fiscal conservative i asked if it was right to take the country to war without asking the americans to shoulder more of the financial burden. >> the american people have paid a great price for the ishlgs rack w iraq war. many more who served and the toll it took on their families. today is the day we should remember their sacrifices and they deposed a dictator and freed 30 million arabs and set up a way. national security is the first priority of the u.s. government, i think the war was worth it. we have to preserve the gains we achieved over the last ten years and beyond, but i think the war is worth it. >> do you think the war is to blame for the deficits we see these days? >> no. it's really not. if you look at where defense spending is today either as a percentage of the economy or budget, it's below post-war norms. under the president's budget it will fall more rapidly. the main cause that we saw today of the explosive growth in spending over ten years,
visited with a top american, which was chuck hagel, of course, defense secretary. kerry has such a good relationship, he's going to try to smooth things over. they think they can get past all of the difficulties with karzai. and they've got a lot of big issues. they've got the transition, political transition to talk about. they've got the obvious transition of a downsizing of the forces and eventually after 2014, figuring out what kind of security agreement there will be with afghanistan. as you've heard, the turnover of the prison today is a big deal, and the americans have been guaranteed that the most dangerous prisoners will not be released. that remains to be seen. but there are a lot of issues. this is, of course, a trip which has already taken kerry to the middle east, working on the israeli palestinian issue in support of president obama. and then trying to help broker that turkish/israeli agreement to restart their relations. and then, of course, his trip to jordan and then the unannounced secret trip to baghdad only yesterday, where he was really chiding and warning prime min
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Search Results 0 to 3 of about 4